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Re: Fish Load

>> If Alex's pH really _is_ going no higher than 7.5, then your explanation
>> certainly a strong possibility, although my preference would always be to
>> lower fish and feeding loads and supplement CO2 rather than go to strong
>> aeration.  Particularly if you are serious about plants.  High fish loads
>> and feeding will inevitably lead to other problems down the line.
>I agree entirely that high feeding loads are likely to cause other
>problems.  If high loads are the problem, then increased aeration may be a
>stop-gap measure and reducing the feeding load is perhaps the best
>solution.  An intermediate solution might be to go to more frequent and/or
>larger water changes.
>So just what is a heavy fish load?

I keep a heavy fish load.  Typically, my tanks carry just about an inch per
gallon, and often more than that (depending on how you count the bottom
feeders and smaller fish).

As for the 'other problems' each of you refer to -- I'm sure they come into
play, but I haven't seen disaster strike my tanks as a result.  We tend to
overfeed; my husband and I both feed the tanks, so sometimes they get an
extra meal, as a result.  Not to mention, I've got a lot of bottom feeders,
and I tend to give a little extra pinch, to make sure it reaches down to
them.  My fish seem to achieve full growth, or at least as much growth as
less-stocked tanks I've known.  I don't often get disease outbreaks, and
when I do, I blame my lack of a quarantine tank, not my fish load.  I don't
have serious algae problems; again, I've discovered other reasons for the
outbreaks I've had.

Perhaps it's not such a problem because I plant heavily with fast-growing
bunch plants?  Perhaps it's the weekly water changes?

Alysoun McLaughlin
Wheaton, Maryland